Daily news and blawg watch up on Insitelaw: Two tribes go to War?
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They are both distinguished lawyers. They both hail from the same part of the profession… but they are now taking diametrically opposing views on the legality of the Iraq war and given the pedigree of the critic, former Lord Chief Justice and senior law lord, Lord Bingham – we have to listen. Or do we? The Justice secretary, Jack Straw does not seem to be inclined to do so.
|The BBC reports: “Legal advice given to Tony Blair by the attorney general prior to the Iraq war was fundamentally “flawed,” a former law lord has claimed. Lord Bingham said Lord Goldsmith had given Mr Blair “no hard evidence” that Iraq had defied UN resolutions “in a manner justifying resort to force”. Therefore, the action by the UK and US was “a serious violation of international law,” Lord Bingham added.||
It was Churchill who said that history is written by the victors and that may well have been true in the past but with the internet, global communication at the press of an email send button, blog or website *publish* button – it is not quite so easy to control the ‘public record’ and lay down ‘truth’.
The BBC reports states: Responding to Lord Bingham’s criticism, Lord Goldsmith insisted the invasion of Iraq was legal. “I would not have given that advice if it were not genuinely my view,” he said.
This is a damning condemnation of what was an unjustified invasion
Nick Clegg, Lib Dem leader
Lord Chancellor Jack Straw backed Lord Goldsmith, arguing that his advice “was shared by many member states across the world… I do not accept Lord Bingham’s conclusions, which do not, I am afraid, take proper account of the text of Security Council Resolution 1441 nor its negotiating history,” Mr Straw said.
The Guardian: Top judge: US and UK acted as ‘vigilantes’ in Iraq invasion
Former senior law lord condemns ‘serious violation of international law.